GolTV Scores Copa America Rights

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New York -- GolTV scored exclusive English-language telecast rights in the United States to the Copa America soccer tournament.

During an announcement at its upfront presentation to advertisers here Wednesday, the network said it acquired the rights to the 26-match tournament, terms of which were not disclosed, from Sao Paolo, Brazil-headquartered Traffic Sports Marketing.

The tournament -- featuring the national teams from the United States, Brazil, Paraguay and host country Venezuela -- kicks off June 26 and runs through July 16. The United States’ first group-C match is scheduled against Argentina June 28 at 8:45 p.m. (EST). Univision holds the live Spanish-language game rights to the tourney in this country.

The network -- with a feed can be switched between English and Spanish and which now counts 11 million subscribers on basic, sports-tiers and Spanish-language packages -- also announced that is undertaking a new branding and on-air redesign.

The new look -- with an accent on orange and blue -- will showcase the network’s programming, featuring eye-catching on-screen graphics with the faces of such stars as Ronaldinho, Raul and Pavel Pardo and other top players in the Spanish and German leagues.

GolTV’s logo changed, as well. The new branding utilizes the established “ball and arch” marks, but creates a greater emphasis on the word GolTV.

Elsewhere, advertisers now have the opportunity to sponsor a series of on-air and online vignettes, according to advertising-sales manager Jagdeep Wadhwani. In conjunction with Spanish-language portal Terra.com, the "4 Gigabyte" offer features top soccer players talking about music on-air, before leaders in the music realm complete the loop by discussing fútbol online. Wadhwani said 50 pieces of content had been produced.

The transaction under which SCP Worldwide -- a sports, entertainment and media company whose principles include former Madison Square Garden and CSTV executives Dave Checketts and Chris Bevilacqua -- would take a majority ownership stake in GolTV still has not been finalized, according to SCP and GolTV executives at the upfront presentation.

The parties have been working together in recent months, and Bevilacqua said SCP and GolTV would like to package Copa America, along with 90 South American World Cup qualifying matches the former has acquired, to distributors and advertisers for showings on different platforms.

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